Newly-appointed minister can Ring changes for rural Ireland
In Irish mythology, Fionn mac Cumhaill and Na Fianna always enjoyed an invigorating swim in the wild Atlantic waves from Slea Head to Erris head on summer solstice, the day when the sun god was closest to Ireland.
On that day, Manannán mac Lir, the god of the sea, lavished his bounty of minerals, iodines and nutrients on those who swam in the Atlantic Ocean, thereby bestowing on them the virility of youth, which they needed in battle. Many of Na Fianna died far too young, but Fionn's son Oisín did reach Tír na nÓg, where he spent 300 years with the beautiful Niamh Chinn Ór.
It's a charming story based on myth more than fact. Still, I must admit that I enjoy a long refreshing sea swim on June 21 each year in the hope that some of that youthful vigour is still floating around. So far I've been out of luck and have resigned myself to growing old gracefully!